The oceans are teeming with life and potential – but the high seas are still largely ungoverned.
The open oceans are the world's "wild west", falling outside any nation's jurisdiction. UN negotiations are aiming to draft new laws for the high seas.
Fishermen rescued from a boat on which they were trafficked to work.
There are no proper laws to combat fisheries crime. As a result, a number of organisations need to join forces to stop the problem.
While not all subsidies are bad, some are drive a ‘race to fish’.
Fish numbers are rapidly dwindling globally, and fishery subsidies are one of the key drivers behind this decline.
Small but dangerous – and coming to the New World.
A small invasive fish known as the topmouth gudgeon has already wreaked havoc on European species and its arrival to the US and South America is only a matter of time.
Samal, Philippines: protected area to manage fish recovery.
The combination of local fishing rights with adjacent marine reserves creates incentives to avoid overfishing and could improve nearshore, small-scale fisheries around the world.
Time to get cracking: a Canadian research vessel in the Arctic.
John F. Williams/Office of Naval Research
A melting Arctic means new areas will be open to commercial fishing but scientists – and bordering countries – say they need time to study the ecological and economic risks.
Sardines (Sardinops sagax) in Mexico (Octavio Aburto)
Gulf of California Marine Program - http://gulfprogram.ucsd.edu
Over the past 80 years sardine and anchovy have become icons of modern-day marine biology, oceanography and climate research.
Balanced harvesting adds new fish to the menu.
Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center
Spreading fishing pressure evenly across whole marine ecosystems sounds like a great idea. But there's a hitch – we can't technologically do it, and even if we could, it would be expensive.
A golden crispy flake and chips is a classic takeaway meal. But is it a sustainable choice?
Flake is great with steaming hot chips. But what fish species is it, and is it sustainable? In Australia, it's mainly gummy shark, which is a sustainable choice. But beware poorly labelled imitations.
Marine parks are valuable tools to help safeguard species such as seagrasses.
AAP Image/James Cook University
Australia's network of marine parks - a decade in the making and announced in 2012 - haven't been implemented yet, and the Abbott government has already placed the plans under review. Why the hurry?
Coral reefs and associated fisheries are of vital social, cultural and economic importance.
Scuba-diving scientists devise method for gauging the health of coral reefs – a vital ecosystem for keeping fisheries sustainable for people.
Nigel Farage raised fishing quotas on the campaign trawl in Grismby.
Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has said EU fisheries policies means the UK gives away the majority of its fish. Is he right?
Fish can suffocate too.
The oxygen is being sucked out of the ocean, and while much of it is happening far below the surface, it will still affect us above.
Cannonball Jellyfish in the Gulf of California.
Yazmin Flores for GCMP
In a changing climate, ocean populations sometimes rise and fall in unpredictable waves. Scientists, managers and fishers must make economically and ecologically sound decisions based on long-term outlooks.
Monitoring fishing vessels could be a growth industry in the tiny Pacific island nations that govern the world’s largest tuna fishery.
AAP Image/Xavier La Canna
A tiny handful of Pacific island nations control more than 50% of the world's tuna fishery, and their efforts to monitor international fishing vessels are set to become a major source of jobs.
Looks healthy, but still lacks the big predatory fish… how would it rate on the index?
We know that fishing has significant impacts on our oceans and the animals that live in them. Effects can range from habitat modification caused by bottom trawls, stock declines from overfishing or subtler…
Trawling for fish? You might be setting yourself up for a paltry haul next time.
Trawling – dragging heavy gear over ocean bottoms in search of fish near the sea floor – is arguably one of the most destructive human practices. Removing fish from the sea for an ever-hungry, growing…
Phytoplankton are responsible for half the world’s productivity. Here, a phytoplankton bloom in the northern Pacific.
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Flickr
You may not have heard of them or given them much thought, but phytoplankton — the microscopic plants that grow throughout the world’s oceans — are the foundation of oceanic food webs. Although tiny, they…
Young Steller sea lions in Prince William Sound, Alaska. NMFS Permit 14336.
A decade ago, we set out to unravel deep ocean crime scenes we weren’t even sure existed. The crime? Endangered Steller sea lions were rapidly disappearing in parts of Alaska. Their numbers dropped by…
About 18% of the world’s seagrass stocks have disappeared over 20 years.
Seagrass is one of the most important coastal habitats where young ocean-going fish such as Atlantic cod can grow and develop before setting out on the journey of life. But these critically important habitats…